Re: [Online Overview] What is Web Accessibility? slide

I have tried rewriting the slide, to see whether we can get some ideas.

I have tried to focus on content, tools and the importance of standards in 
bringing them together. I’ve also tried to avoid technical and W3C jargon 
like “assistive technologies”, “authoring tools”, “Web content”, “support”, 
“web technologies” (when we mean markup languages).

What is Web Accessibility? Web accessibility means access to the Web by 
everyone, regardless of disability.
Web accessibility means accessible Web content and tools:

· Accessible Web content:
  - Web pages, sites and applications that people with different 
disabilities can perceive, interact with, navigate, and understand without 

· Accessible tools:
  - Web browsers and media players that people with disabilities can use 
effectively, with the special technologies that some of them use;
  - Tools that allow people with disabilities to create Web pages 
themselves, and
  - Tools that support production of accessible Web pages;

· Web standards (languages such as HTML):
  - Tools and content creators keep to agreed standards, so they can work 
  - Standards that provide for the accessibility needs of people with 


Does the point about being "forwards-compatible" mean including XML and the 
semantic web? I don't think many non-technical people know what the 
semantic web is, or will do in the future.

I remember there has been discussion about "operable" but I think interact 
with is more understandable, especially for non-technical people and non- 
native speakers.

I think that the points about "can be used effectively" and "work well 
with" express the same idea from different viewpoints, so the could be 

HTML is a common denominator that all the audience will understand. The 
term "authoring tool" is jargon for most people I work with. I think "Web 
content" is perhaps also jargon for many people, especially non-native 
speakers. I suggest something like "special technologies" rather than 
"assistive technologies." At the first slide many people will be unaware 
what these technologies are like. Non-technical people likely won’t know 
what the semantic web is, let alone understand it’s importance.

I want to convey the idea that both the content and the tools must agree on 
common standards; that the fact that they all interoperate isn’t something 
to take for granted.

On Fri, 04 Apr 2003 01:05:15 -0500, Judy Brewer <> wrote:

> For discussion at EOWG meeting today 4 April 2003:
> Proposed text for slide follows. This does not solve all concerns raised 
> to date -- I am not sure that we will be able to do so and reach 
> consensus -- but attempts to improve on a slide on which we had 
> considerable consensus, by incorporating some comments and suggestions 
> which have been raised.
> ----------------
> What is Web Accessibility?
> Web accessibility means access to the Web by everyone, regardless of 
> disability.
> Web accessibility includes:
> - Web sites and Web applications
> -- that are perceivable, operable, navigable, and understandable by 
> people with disabilities;
> - Web browsers and media players
> -- that can be used effectively by people with disabilities, and
> -- that work well with assistive technologies that some people with 
> disabilities use to access the Web;
> - Web authoring tools
> -- that are usable by people with disabilities, and
> -- that support production of accessible Web content and Web sites;
> - evolving Web technologies
> -- not only HTML and CSS, but XML, the Semantic Web, and more
> -- that support accessibility requirements of people with disabilities.
> ---------------------
> We need to resolve the question of what to put on the "What is Web 
> Accessibility?" slide that we decided, in January, to add near the 
> beginning of the Online Overview of the Web Accessibility Initiative:
> We've discussed it at several of EOWG meetings over the past few months, 
> and were close to agreement on an approach. Then concerns were raised 
> which we discussed at length in our teleconference on 7 February 2003:
> After extensive discussion, we decided to keep the proposed slide largely 
> the same, though shifting the focus slightly in certain areas if 
> possible, including:
> - be more forwards-compatible with regard to evolving technologies;
> - emphasize a more interactive Web;
> - try to use terminology that speaks better to the technical community 
> while not leaving behind non-technical audiences.
> Since then, several people have offered different ideas and/or new 
> versions, some of which have been discussed on the list, including 
> Sailesh's suggestion:
> but none of which seem to have gained broad acceptance.
> Some of these build on Al's email, and show how differently we could 
> approach this:
> for instance this excerpt:
> "A Web which offers equal access to people with disabilities is one where 
> the performance on the [above] three axes: complete delivery of 
> information, complete access to outcomes, and effective command of the 
> process -- is subtantially the same for people with disabilities and for 
> people without disabilities."
> While on one level this seems to be a much more comprehensive & effective 
> answer to the question of what is Web accessibility, it is abstract 
> enough that I do not know if a lay (non-technical) reader would easily 
> grasp it -- and we want to keep readers engaged past the first few 
> slides.
> Comments on the above are welcome.
> - Judy

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Received on Friday, 4 April 2003 04:41:51 UTC